Likes: cuddling with her mom; sleeping with mom; drooling on mom; kneading on mom; sleeping in the sun; chasing the errant bug; eating her brothers' food; begging for treats
Pet-Peeves: the Needle Lady; other cats (especially her brothers); car rides; prescription food; being left alone; and, of course, going to the vet
Favorite Toy: cat dancer; Lloyd the lemon (from Gordy); Hot Dog (from boogers); rabbit fur (from Smudge); candy cane (from Rocky Ann); countless other toys from friends; and anything crinkly that has catnip
Favorite Nap Spot: her mom's lap, chest, legs, stomach, neck, or head; her little patch of sunlight; her tent (from Wally); her thermoreflective pad; her warming pads (from Gordy and Grandmaw); her cushion (from Cali); her pillow (from Abigail); also her Morgan's cat bed
Favorite Food: Entemann's donuts, Easy Cheese, tacos, cheeseburgers, sausage pizza, black olives, french fries, lettuce (yes, really!), raw chicken livers, Whiska's Temptations, goldfish crackers, and any food she's not supposed to eat
Skills: jumps straight into her mom's arms; healing people (especially mom)
Arrival Story: When I was a little girl, I begged and begged for a cat. When begging didn't work, I tried the more rhetorically effective angle of making lists demonstrating the benefits of cat ownership for a child. Christmas of 1988 came and passed and still no kitty. But a few days after the new year, my parents took us to the West Suburban Humane Society to pick out a kitty.
Ironically, I wasn't enamored of Simba (then Panda) at first. Instead, I had my heart set on two longhaired cats who had to be rehomed together. While I was talking quietly to these two, the rest of the family was inspecting a skinny black and white girl. Having made their decision, they asked me what I thought. Since I wasn't about to pass up the opportunity for a cat - any cat - I said yes to her.
And from the moment she ensconced herself in our home, she was quite obviously mine and I was hers. I was 10 years old, and had found my soulmate. When a second kitten, Josie, came to live with us by chance a few years later, Simba didn't react well. My mother explained to me that I had to make a choice. From that moment on, I paid the new kitten no attention, content to snuggle with Ms. Sim.
And we've been snuggling together now for nearly 18 years. We were separated from a few months when I left for college, but, fortunately, I was able to move out of the dorms before my freshman year was up and little Sim came to live with me in the Arizona desert, where she promptly gained 2lbs (she was always a tiny kitty - she went from 6lbs to 8lbs).
Bio: Simba is the only cat I know who had to be spayed twice - apparently the first time didn't take. We should have known right then that she was going to be exceptional. We used to keep her toys in a special toy drawer, which she observed keenly for a few weeks until she learned to open it and take out her toys, parading them around the house for us to admire.
She learned that if attention isn't forthcoming, she could make it immediate by launching herself from the ground to my shoulder. And she kept that up until she could barely reach my waist with her leaps- i had to learn to" swoop and catch" when that happened. Note how good she is at training her people: now that she's older and fighting kidney disease (while her siblings are battling obesity), it's important that we keep weight on her. So she's taught us to follow her into the kitchen - if she wants treats, she'll stand by the pantry. If she wants wet or dry food, she'll stand closer to the fridge or the sink. And, of course, if she heads in the direction of the kitchen, we follow. She knows that if she walks towards the bedroom, we'll close the door and give her alone time from the other cats. And if I wake her with a gentle touch just so, she'll hop right up, ready to follow me to bed for quality cuddle time.
She always knows when it's bedtime - whether I do or not - and will come get me for enforced rest. And ever since she was little, she's known when i was sick and will "guard" me from people by sitting on me and growling at those daring enough to contemplate disturbing me. If I have a sore throat, she'll wrap herself around my neck; a stomachache will find her lying across my tummy.
She's truly a one-person kitty. She'll only let me hold her, and woe to any other person who attempts to carry her. While she has mellowed as she's gotten older (and thus has accepted - and even loves - my partner), she won't let anyone else handle her.
Even at 18 years old, she still hates other cats. The youngest in our house has a tendency to beat her up, but when she reaches the end of her fuse, she can still get him cowering in a corner after she's decided enough is enough. (This from the smallest of cats: she's outweighed by all members of our household by at least 2-3lbs...or at least she was until 2007!). In fact, she continued to put the smack down on the little one even as heart disease creeps up on her. She only has a few months left to live, but she lives each moment to the fullest.
27 June 2006 left her with this diagnosis. Simba fought valiantly for almost 2 additional years. On 23 May 2008, I undertook the heartbreaking final duty of helping Simba move to her next journey. I don't think she really wanted to go. Although she needed a class three narcotic three times a day and had little appetite, she spent her final days seeking (and receiving cuddles). And even under heavy sedation before the final injection, as I knelt by her head, whispered softly to her, and gazed into her eye, she growled when the vet tech tried to pet her. Until the end, quite literally, she wanted no one but me. My heart continues to splinter as I think of that moment. My little girl fought through so much pain for me and now it's my turn to fight through my own pain for her. Rest in peace baby. I love you.
Catster Honors: Diary of the Day 11/14/06; "Daily Diary Pick" 7/11/06; 7/15/06; 8/9/06; 8/22/06; 9/26/06; 11/3/06; 11/28/06; 12/2/06; 12/6/06; 4/7/07; 5/15/07; 5/18/07; 3/25/08; Black and White Ankle Biter of the Week, Oct 2006; 23-30 May 2008; BWAB for Life; Calvin's Pal of the Week 5/6/07; Cat of the Day 5/24/08
OMC! Thank you, Princess Annie!:
The BWAB Gave Me This:
My Lil' Gordy:
My Catster Furmily: Meet my God Kitty, the furbulous Hazel Lucy!
From Simba's Mommy: Seven years ago today, Simba passed away. In the last month, Nero (her "nemesis") and Diodo joined her. Twenty years with Simba was wonderful; another 20 still wouldn't be enough, and every year on this day I post a quote from "In Memoriam" in her honor. This year, given the loss and the new special needs kitties, it seems appropriate to select this one for Simba and the love she taught me: "a beam in the darkness: let it grow." - Tennyson
I am unlikely return to Catster regularly, but I suspect I will make pages for the new special needs kitties in the house - Shansa and the as-yet-to-be-named senior girl - for posterity. It is comforting to return to Simba's page (and Nero's, Dante's, and Diodo's), and I suspect I'll be grateful to have pages for the others, even if I'm not active, down the road. We love our Catster friends even if we aren't often on Caster and are so blessed to be able to keep in contact with so many via Facebook.
With hugs from me and glompity glomp glomps from Simba,
On this day in 2008, Sim and I were separated after 20 years together. For the original, pre-Lion King Simba:
“My love involves the love before; / My love is vaster passion now; / …/I seem to love thee more and more. / Far off thou art, but ever nigh;”
-Tennyson, “In Memoriam”
From Simba's Mommy: Sim would have turned 25 today. I suspect that she would have been excited to learn that 25 represents the law to St. Augustine and seized on the opportunity to declare her own law: no more Needle Ladies. :)